The following top 10 tips are aimed at helping hauliers and drivers to minimise the risk of clandestine entrants when it comes to travelling in and out of the UK:
1: Watch the loading - drivers should, where possible, watch their vehicle being loaded so they can be sure no one enters it at this stage.
2: Secure your vehicles - the UK Border Force advises drivers to secure their vehicles using a padlock, seals and tilt cord and to check vehicles after each stop, physically pulling the security devices to ensure they are intact, looking underneath the vehicle, on top of it and under the windbreaker.
3: Look for hiding places - the most common hiding points on a HGV include the windbreaker, the cab, within the load and on the load. When carrying out checks, include these areas and also check the tilt cord for damage. Often they will be cut and then glued back together by those seeking to get into the trailer.
4: Make a record - record checks on a company vehicle security checklist and conduct one final check before entering the port area.
5: Inform your drivers - haulage companies are encouraged to give their drivers full written instructions on the checking system which the company follows.
6: Give drivers security - hauliers should also provide adequate security equipment to enable the driver to secure the vehicle.
7: Training - drivers should be provided with training in how to use the checking system and how to use the security equipment so there is no doubt. Employers should monitor the compliance of drivers by methodically checking the security checklists.
8: Be vigilant - if as a driver, you suspect your security device has been tampered with, speak to a UK Border Force Officer or the Police.
9: Port parking - clandestine entrants who are looking to gain entry to the UK will specifically look for UK vehicles. Deter them by parking up facing away from the port, to give the appearance that you are traveling elsewhere.
10: Facing a fine - if you are unlucky enough to have a clandestine entrant make their way onto your vehicle, and are now facing action by the UK Border Force, contact a legal specialist for advice on how to best protect your interests.
If you are facing action by the UK Border Force our solicitors can advise you through the process, contact us on 01616 966 229.